Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Lovely, Dark and Deep by Amy McNamara

Lovely, Dark and Deep
Good Reads Summary
Lovely, Dark and Deep by Amy McNamara

A resonant debut novel about retreating from the world after losing everything—and the connections that force you to rejoin it.

Since the night of the crash, Wren Wells has been running away. Though she lived through the accident that killed her boyfriend Patrick, the girl she used to be didn’t survive. Instead of heading off to college as planned, Wren retreats to her father’s studio in the far-north woods of Maine. Somewhere she can be alone.

Then she meets Cal Owen. Dealing with his own troubles, Cal’s hiding out too. When the chemistry between them threatens to pull Wren from her hard-won isolation, Wren has to choose: risk opening her broken heart to the world again, or join the ghosts who haunt her.

My Thoughts
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

  “The facts won’t change… but you will.”

I do this thing where I pick up one book after another of the same kind. A couple of days ago it was all YA action adventure stuff that had me excited but tired. A bit later I'd shifted to a string of mindless sexy reads (emphasis on the ' mindless' which effectively cancelled out my enjoyment of the sexy.) And now? I'm reading books that rip at my heart, so at this rate, my brain will be mush (from all the sexy-brainless reads) and my heart will be in tatters from all these sad ones. I don't mind the latter though because it's reads like this that make up for all those hours up at night. And I'm not even sure I liked the protagonist!!! Also, nothing actually happens save seeing Wren work through her grief her way.

And what may look like her running away wasn’t actually her doing so. It’s her being her as she time and again insisted. A lot like COME SEE ABOUT ME, Wren/Mamie’s overcome by loss and unsure about how to go on (or if she even wants to.) One thing she is certain, though, it’s her not wanting all these expectations of “how to be” from others. But pile on eventual realizations on her part about what others are going though on her behalf/because of her… and there’s no reason to like her, but there’s really no reason to dislike her either. She’s sad; they’re sad, and I was sad for her.  There’s a whole lot of sad in this one, so sad in fact, that it’s left my heart/ my brain/ MY HEART(!!) stuttering. 

Except I didn’t even like Wren because every single negative thing she’s called out on is true. There’s a selfishness to her actions, but it’s a necessary kind of selfishness. The way she separates herself form the rest as well as the way they react as a result, well… all of those things? You can’t actually say she’s unaware because she becomes so eventually. But what she does (and doesn’t do), that’s what’s got her stuck.  So even though I didn’t love her, I got her; I got every one of them in fact: her wanting to be, her mother and father wanting her to move on (but getting the message across in such contrary ways,) even the friend who’s confused about Wren’s choices because they’re all written so clearly… imperfections, especially.

Then there's Cal. I could talk and talk and talk about the guy. About her getting pulled into someone else's nightmare, as well as her talk of "ruined people" but get this: there's this balance between the two because he's been where she's at (is still there, in fact)... and I just loved that bit.


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